OPED–Lawmakers have an opportunity to do more for Texas kids

“When it comes to funding priorities for Texas children, legislators appear to be facing similar tough choices as they work to finalize the state budget. The Senate and House have proposed 2014-15 budgets that, at first glance, seem to highlight different priorities for Texas kids. For example, the House proposes more state money, about $1 […]

We Can’t Overlook Equity When We Talk About Public Ed Funding

Chandra Villanueva

Earlier this year, Judge Dietz found the Texas school finance system to be inadequate and inequitable. The inadequacy finding was undoubtedly exasperated by the $4 billion cut in formula funding and more than $1 billion cut from educational grant programs during the 2011 legislative session. As the Legislature works to restore funding to public schools […]

Open Letter to State Budget Conferees

Today, we sent a letter to the budget conferees outlining our recommendations for reconciling the differences between the House and the Senate regarding health and human services and public and higher education. The conference committee will probably finish making its decisions by Friday, May 10. Only a few days are left for you to make […]

Preliminary House Budget Doesn’t Move Education Funding Forward

Chandra Villanueva

Today, the House budget proposal hits the floor for what will likely to a marathon debate on what our 2014-15 spending will look like. When it comes to public education, the House proposal doesn’t meet the needs of Texas’ children. Here’s an excerpt from my newest policy page about school finance and the House budget […]

Texas Still Has Time For A Much Needed Boost To Financial Aid

CPPP Leslie Helmcamp

If the Legislature is serious about preparing the Texas workforce for future jobs, we need greater investment in higher education that empowers more low-income students to enter and complete college. This Thursday, the Texas House has the opportunity to add more funding to the state’s financial aid programs—proven tools to increase college access and success— […]

Even With Senate Budget, School Districts Will Still Have Less To Spend Per Student

The chart below is based on one done in late February by State Representative Gene Wu, showing real (inflation-adjusted) spending per Texas student. The amounts for 2014 and 2015 reflect what is being proposed in the budget that the Senate will debate today.     Despite the improvements made by the Senate Finance Committee, school […]

On The Road To A BETTER TEXAS

At CPPP, we believe in the people of Texas. And we believe that all Texans deserve a chance to live a safe and healthy life–seeing a doctor when they need one, having healthy food on the table, and getting the education they need to secure their economic future. But what does it take for families […]

211 Data: Austin-area residents struggling to make ends meet

We believe that every Texas family has the right to live a safe and healthy life. That means stable housing, nutritious food on the table, and access to a good education and training for the jobs of today . . . and tomorrow. Recent data from the United Way of Greater Austin’s 211 Navigation Center […]

2013 Lege–College Access & Success

CPPP Leslie Helmcamp

This session, the Economic Opportunity team has been tracking legislation that will affect financial aid, developmental and adult basic education, and career readiness and skills development. We are closely monitoring attempts to limit financial grant aid to students who need it most. Even though current financial aid programs expand access for many low-income students to […]

Restoring Education Should Take Priority

Chandra Villanueva

This week, I testified “on” SB 758 in a Senate Finance committee hearing because there are compelling reasons for and against undoing the Foundation School Program deferral – Deferring the FSP payment prevented even further cuts to public education last session.  Undoing this deferment now would make this tool available again the next time there is […]